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Discussion Starter #1
I'm debating if I want to replace the drywall in my house or just sand the walls smooth and make it look more modern inside. My house was built in 1977 and I'm just curious how easy it would be to sand the walls? They have texture to it and I've been told it makes the house look its age. Just debating on what I should do to my walls, either replace them, I'm assuming it would be a few hundred each room, not including the ceiling, if I just replaced the walls. Each room is around 12x10, except master bedroom, living room and kitchen.

What would you do? I have about 10 days when I come home for R&R and should have around 15 days when I come back from this deployment, so I'll have time off and some cash to spend on the house.
 

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I make love to my walls
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Assuming your walls have paint on them, you'll drive yourself insane trying to sand them smooth. In contrast putting up new drywall would also be a time consuming unnecessary task. My professional recommendation would be to sand the paint a little just to roughen up the surface and then skim coat the walls with a lightweight compound. As long as you sand the walls before you skim you'll achieve the same smooth results as new drywall in half the time and cost and not to mention the mess.
 

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Arey,

Isn't it strange how many people simply would not be able to understand your avatar statement?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Assuming your walls have paint on them, you'll drive yourself insane trying to sand them smooth. In contrast putting up new drywall would also be a time consuming unnecessary task. My professional recommendation would be to sand the paint a little just to roughen up the surface and then skim coat the walls with a lightweight compound. As long as you sand the walls before you skim you'll achieve the same smooth results as new drywall in half the time and cost and not to mention the mess.
What kind of lightweight compound? Any recommendations on a sander, or just hand sand?
 

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The question that needs to be asked is how much texture are we looking at.

This will determine what the next step is, if its deep texturing then I would re drywall, ligt texturing may be a different story.

Either way skim coating is not an easy task for an inexperienced person,

Mark
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I can have the wife take a picture of the wall and ceiling. You'll have an update later today.
 

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I make love to my walls
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Agreed that skim coating isn't easy for an inexperienced person however, it is easier to get the hang of than re drywalling and finishing a whole house.
 

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I have seen various types of texturing, some looks like the look you would have in an old wine cellar, very rustic, very difficult to change to smoothness.

I would rather put up 1/2 x 4x 8 sheets of drywall over trying to skim coat, just my opinion. I guess to each his own, I find taping a finishing a drywall joint more easily accomplished than sanding, skim coating, sanding, skim coating, sanding skim coating and chances are the results won't be as nice.

Mark
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Decisions, decisions. The drywall in my laundry room, when I took an old shelf down, it seemed to crumble, so I figured why not just replace the whole house, one room at a time, I can use my spare toom or even the laundry room as a "learning tool".
 

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My house is 1968 vintage and it had a slight sand texture on the walls. Not a design, just as if sand was mixed into the paint. I sanded the walls first with a sanding screen and then with regular 100 grit drywall sanding sheets. That took care of the bulk of the bumpies and it does not look near so dated.

Another option over sanding and new drywall is to hang wallpaper liner paper, prime with an oil primer, skim out the seams, sand and then prime and paint the wall as usual. I run a bead of caulk around the top at the ceiling line and at the door casings. You would also need to caulk at the baseboard, but I choose to pop the baseboards off and reinstall after the oil priming is done. The liner wallpaper has good body to it to cover lots of trouble areas. If you have large damaged spots in the walls I would skim those first before hanging the liner paper. Dont forget to size the walls prior to hanging the paper. This is the least messy way to get a nice smooth wall IMHO.
 

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Another thing to keep in mind...

Texture is nice because it helps to hide imperfections in the wall.
If you take the wall down to a flat surface every little hump and wave will be more obvious - even more so depending on your paint choice, lighting fixtures, etc.

Just something to consider.

I would have to agree with the others. Skimming the walls would be easier and would fit your time constraints. Re-rocking your house is a big undertaking for a 10 day R&R.:thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Another thing to keep in mind...

Texture is nice because it helps to hide imperfections in the wall.
If you take the wall down to a flat surface every little hump and wave will be more obvious - even more so depending on your paint choice, lighting fixtures, etc.

Just something to consider.

I would have to agree with the others. Skimming the walls would be easier and would fit your time constraints. Re-rocking your house is a big undertaking for a 10 day R&R.:thumbsup:
I'll have help with the wife :D But, what is skimming, is there like a How To? Once the wife wakes up, she's taking pictures of the texture on our walls and ceiling.
 

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Replace GWB or sand smooth

You can probably rent a drywall sander from your local big box store. I would sand the walls with that. It has a vacuum that goes with it to keep the dust down. Made by porter cable. I would definitely sand the walls. I wouldn't keep them smooth. The others are correct in saying that every little imperfection will be seen depending on light and paint. I would retexture everything. A nice knockdown or heavy orange peel is pretty good to hide stuff. Pick your paints carefully. The brighter and glossier the paint the more imperfections come thru. I always try to go eggshell in all rooms except for kitchens and bathrooms. In Las Vegas and every home built has either knockdown or orange peel. These are new homes being built. Wont look dated
 

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Skimming is loading the whole wall with compound and then wiping it off again with a large knife or trowel. The way I do bigger jobs like a whole house is have one guy (or wife) thin down some compound with water maybe a cup and a half per bucket and roll the whole wall with a paint roller while you go behind and wipe it off. I don't know how thick your texture is but you may have to put it on thick the first coat. Then after it's dry scrape down the ridges and sand just a little,a few light passes with a pole or the machine with 220 grit. Then do it again but pull your coat tighter almost trying to wipe it all off. I use a 20" trowel and it goes pretty fast once you get the hang of it.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks for all these tips! Also, since the has was built in 1977, should I get it tested for asbestos?

Here is what each room wall looks like:


The whole house ceiling looks like this:


Kitchen:
 

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I make love to my walls
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Ok so for the walls I would rent the porter cable sander and get some 60 or 80 grit and sand the walls first. Reason being, if you skim coat over paint then prime and paint youll develop little pin holes in the walls. Getting it tested Is up to you. For the ceiling try the machine and see how much it will take off. It's a tough call that's a pretty thick stomp texture. If it were me I would sand the hell out of it and skim it really thick then do two more coats over it. The problem with drywalling over a thick texture is that your new drywall will never sit tight against the existing ceiling with all the ridges and youll develop screw pops later on. I've been a drywall contractor for years and I always try to talk customers into ripping down the old ceiling and replacing it just because myself and my guys can do the job fast and it comes out better but in your case its worth it to see if you can skim it because it's going to take you a lot longer to re drywall. Just try it in one room and see how it comes out. I don't know what kind of compound is available in your area but I use proform all purpose for the first coat with a couple drops of dawn dishsoap and then lightweight proform for each additional coat. I suggest taping off the tops of your baseboards first if your going to roll the mud on
 

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If you are sanding the walls, lead is what you want to test for. They sell lead testing kits at the big box stores.

Mark
 

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You really cant add another layer of drywall. Probably stick out past casing of doors. Best bet is to sand and re-texture or replace the board. Sorry for the bad news but it really isn't as bad as every one says it is. Half a day with demo. 9 and a half of getting it back together. But make sure u send time with your wife. Family is more important than dated walls. Told my wife your story of deployment. We thank you for service to our country and commitment to our freedom. THANK YOU.
 
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